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Zipolite, Mexico – The Perfect Beach Bum Town


Modified: January 3, 2024

by Ashley Conlon



Welcome to Zipolite, Mexico – a hidden gem on the southern coast of Oaxaca. This idyllic town is a haven for beach lovers and offers a laid-back, bohemian vibe that is perfect for those seeking relaxation and a break from the bustling city life. Zipolite’s pristine beaches, warm turquoise waters, and friendly locals make it an unforgettable destination that combines natural beauty, adventure, and tranquility.


Located in the heart of Mexico’s Pacific coast, Zipolite is nestled between the Sierra Madre del Sur mountains and the shimmering waters of the Pacific Ocean. Its unique geography provides stunning panoramic views and a diverse ecosystem, attracting nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers alike.


Zipolite is famous for its beautiful all-year-round sunshine and golden sandy beaches. Whether you’re a sunbather looking for a peaceful spot to relax, a surfer searching for the perfect wave, or simply someone who enjoys tranquil walks along the shore, Zipolite has something for everyone.


The true allure of Zipolite lies in its untouched and natural environment. Unlike other popular tourist destinations in Mexico, Zipolite has managed to maintain its pristine beauty and avoid excessive urban development. Visitors are treated to a secluded and unspoiled stretch of coastline.


So come and discover Zipolite, Mexico – a place where time slows down and worries fade away. Immerse yourself in the beauty of the beaches, embrace the local culture, indulge in delicious cuisine, and experience the warmth and hospitality of the people. This article will guide you through the various attractions and activities that make Zipolite an extraordinary destination for beach lovers and adventure seekers alike.


Location and Geography

Zipolite is located on the southern coast of Oaxaca, Mexico, approximately 25 kilometers from the popular town of Puerto Escondido. Nestled between the Sierra Madre del Sur mountains and the Pacific Ocean, Zipolite boasts a picturesque setting that is both awe-inspiring and serene.


The town is known for its long sandy beaches, which stretch for about 1.5 kilometers and offer stunning views of the ocean. The warm and inviting waters of the Pacific make it an ideal destination for swimming, snorkeling, and other water activities.


Zipolite’s geography is characterized by its rugged coastline, with cliffs and rocky outcrops that provide a stunning backdrop to the golden sand beaches. Along the shore, visitors can find hidden coves, tide pools, and natural rock formations that add to the area’s natural beauty.


The region surrounding Zipolite is home to diverse flora and fauna, thanks to the combination of mountains and the ocean. The nearby forests are filled with tropical plants, while the waters are inhabited by an array of marine life, including dolphins, turtles, and colorful fish.


Visitors to Zipolite can also explore the nearby attractions, such as the Punta Cometa cliff, which offers panoramic views of the coastline and is a popular spot for whale watching during migration season. The neighboring Mazunte Turtle Center is another must-visit destination, where visitors can learn about the conservation efforts to protect endangered sea turtles.


The town itself is small and charming, with colorful buildings and a relaxed atmosphere. Its proximity to other popular destinations, such as Puerto Escondido and Mazunte, makes it a convenient base for exploring the surrounding areas.


In addition to its natural wonders, Zipolite also embraces its indigenous heritage and culture. The local Zapotec community contributes to the town’s unique atmosphere, with traditional music, crafts, and culinary delights that showcase the rich cultural heritage of the region.


Overall, Zipolite’s location and geography provide a perfect blend of natural beauty and cultural richness, making it a dream destination for those seeking an escape from the everyday hustle and bustle.



Zipolite is renowned for its stunning beaches and pristine coastline, making it a paradise for beach lovers. Whether you’re searching for a quiet spot to relax or looking to indulge in water activities, Zipolite offers a diverse range of beaches to suit every preference.


The main beach in Zipolite, Playa Zipolite, stretches along the town’s coastline and is known for its golden sands and crystal-clear waters. The beach offers a tranquil setting, perfect for sunbathing or taking long walks along the shore. Its gentle waves make it ideal for swimming and floating in the refreshing ocean.


If you’re seeking a more secluded experience, head to Playa del Amor. Located just a short distance from Playa Zipolite, this hidden gem is accessible via a scenic trail that winds through the lush vegetation. Playa del Amor offers a peaceful and intimate atmosphere, with its untouched beauty and fewer crowds.


For adventurous souls and surf enthusiasts, Playa Marinero is the place to be. Known for its consistent waves and surfing-friendly conditions, this beach attracts surfers from around the world. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced surfer, Playa Marinero offers excellent opportunities to catch a wave and showcase your skills.


Zipolite is also home to two picturesque coves known as Playa Estacahuite and Playa Puerto Angelito. These tranquil beaches are perfect for snorkeling and swimming, with their calm and clear waters allowing visitors to explore the vibrant marine life beneath the surface.


Another notable beach near Zipolite is Playa Mermejita. Located just a short drive away, this secluded beach is known for its unique rock formations and stunning natural beauty. The dramatic cliffs along the shore provide a breathtaking backdrop for sunsets and are a favorite spot for photographers.


Whether you prefer a lively and vibrant beach or a secluded and peaceful spot, Zipolite has a beach for everyone. From sunbathing and swimming to surfing and snorkeling, these pristine beaches offer endless opportunities for relaxation and adventure.


Surfing and Water Sports

Zipolite is a true haven for water sports enthusiasts, particularly those who love to surf. With its consistent waves and warm waters, the town attracts surfers of all levels, from beginners to experienced riders.


Playa Marinero, the main surfing beach in Zipolite, offers great conditions for catching waves. The beach provides a mix of left and right breaks, making it suitable for surfers of varying skill levels. Whether you’re a novice looking to take your first surf lesson or an experienced surfer seeking a new challenge, Playa Marinero has something to offer.


In addition to surfing, Zipolite also provides opportunities for other water sports such as bodyboarding and stand-up paddleboarding. The calm and clear waters of the Pacific Ocean make it an ideal spot for these activities, allowing visitors to glide along the waves and enjoy an exhilarating experience.


If you’re interested in exploring beneath the surface, snorkeling and scuba diving are popular water activities in and around Zipolite. The nearby coves and reefs host a wide variety of marine life, including colorful tropical fish, sea turtles, and vibrant coral formations. Snorkeling and diving tours are available for those who want to immerse themselves in the underwater world and witness the beauty of Mexico’s Pacific coast.


For those seeking a more adrenaline-pumping adventure, Zipolite also offers opportunities for jet skiing, parasailing, and fishing trips. Whether you’re looking to speed across the waves, soar in the sky, or catch your dinner, there are options available to suit your desires.


Regardless of your skill level or preferred water sport, Zipolite provides the perfect playground for aquatic activities. The combination of warm waters, excellent wave conditions, and breathtaking marine life make it a must-visit destination for water sports enthusiasts.


Nude Beaches

One of the unique features of Zipolite is its acceptance and embrace of nudity on certain beaches. This has made the town a popular destination for those looking to experience the freedom of going au naturel while enjoying the sun, sand, and surf.


The most famous nude beach in Zipolite is, unsurprisingly, Playa Zipolite itself. This beach has a designated nude section, where visitors can feel comfortable shedding their clothes and soaking up the sun without judgment. The atmosphere on the nude section of Playa Zipolite is relaxed and nonchalant, as people of all ages and walks of life come together to enjoy their natural state.


It’s important to note that, while nudity is accepted and relatively common on the nude section of Playa Zipolite, it is not mandatory. Visitors can choose to keep their swimwear on if they prefer. Respect and acceptance are key in this unique social setting, where everyone is free to be themselves and enjoy the beach in their own way.


Alongside Playa Zipolite, there are other nearby beaches that also cater to those seeking a clothing-optional experience. Playa del Amor, located just a short distance from Zipolite, provides a secluded and picturesque setting where visitors can embrace their natural state in a more intimate and secluded setting.


It’s worth noting that while nudity is more accepted on these designated nude beaches, it may still be considered taboo or inappropriate in other areas of Zipolite. It’s important to respect the local culture and customs outside of the designated nude sections and to follow any guidelines or rules that may be in place.


Whether you’re a seasoned naturist or simply curious about the experience, the nude beaches of Zipolite offer a liberating and inclusive environment where you can truly be yourself and enjoy the beauty of the surroundings without inhibition.


Accommodation Options

Zipolite boasts a variety of accommodation options to suit different preferences and budgets. Whether you’re looking for a luxurious beachfront resort, a cozy boutique hotel, or a budget-friendly hostel, you’ll find plenty of choices in this charming Mexican town.


Beachfront Resorts: For those seeking a luxurious and pampering experience, there are several beachfront resorts in Zipolite that offer stunning ocean views and top-notch amenities. These resorts provide guests with the ultimate comfort and relaxation, often featuring private pools, spas, and gourmet dining options.


Boutique Hotels: Zipolite is home to numerous boutique hotels that offer a unique and personalized experience. These smaller, often family-run establishments provide a more intimate setting and showcase the local culture and charm. They boast cozy rooms, beautiful gardens, and friendly staff who ensure a memorable stay.


Hostels: If you’re traveling on a budget or prefer a more communal atmosphere, Zipolite has a range of hostels and guesthouses that offer affordable accommodation options. These establishments provide comfortable dormitory-style or private rooms and often have communal areas where travelers can socialize and share their experiences.


Eco-Lodges: For eco-conscious travelers, there are eco-lodges and eco-friendly accommodations available in Zipolite. These establishments prioritize sustainability and environmental conservation, offering guests a unique and eco-friendly experience. From solar-powered buildings to organic food options, these accommodations allow visitors to minimize their environmental impact while enjoying the beauty of Zipolite.


Campgrounds: For a more adventurous experience, Zipolite offers campgrounds where visitors can pitch their tents and immerse themselves in nature. These campgrounds provide basic facilities and a chance to sleep under the stars, offering an affordable and immersive experience for nature enthusiasts.


It’s important to note that due to the popularity of Zipolite among tourists, it is recommended to book accommodation in advance, especially during peak travel seasons. This ensures that you secure the desired lodging that matches your preferences and budget.


Whatever your accommodation preference may be, staying in Zipolite provides an opportunity to immerse yourself in the beauty of the town and create memories that will last a lifetime.


Restaurants and Bars

Zipolite offers a vibrant and diverse culinary scene, with a wide range of restaurants and bars to satisfy every palate. Whether you’re craving traditional Mexican dishes, fresh seafood, international cuisine, or vegetarian and vegan options, you’ll find a plethora of choices to tantalize your taste buds in this charming beach town.


Seafood lovers will delight in the abundance of fresh catches available in Zipolite. Many of the local restaurants specialize in seafood dishes, serving up freshly grilled fish, succulent shrimp, and delectable ceviche. From beachfront shacks to upscale waterfront restaurants, you can enjoy the ocean breeze while savoring the flavors of the sea.


Mexican cuisine takes center stage in Zipolite, offering a range of traditional dishes bursting with flavor. From sizzling street tacos and hearty tamales to mouthwatering mole and authentic Oaxacan delicacies, the local restaurants showcase the diverse flavors and culinary traditions of the region.


For those seeking international flavors, there are also restaurants that cater to a wide range of cuisines. From Italian trattorias serving homemade pasta to Asian fusion eateries offering sushi and stir-fry, you can embark on a global culinary journey without leaving Zipolite.


Vegetarians and vegans need not worry about finding food options that suit their dietary preferences. Zipolite is known for its vegetarian and vegan-friendly establishments, offering plant-based dishes that are both delicious and nutritious. Whether you’re in the mood for a fresh salad, vegan tacos, or a colorful smoothie bowl, you’ll find plenty of options to choose from.


When it comes to bars and nightlife, Zipolite offers a laid-back and casual atmosphere. Along the main beach and the town’s streets, you’ll find a variety of bars and clubs where you can enjoy a refreshing cocktail or ice-cold beer. Whether you’re looking for a beachfront bar where you can sip a margarita while watching the sunset or a lively spot to experience local music and dance, there’s something for everyone.


Furthermore, Zipolite is home to several beachfront cafes and coffee shops where you can relax with a cup of freshly brewed coffee or enjoy a light meal with a view. These cozy establishments offer a tranquil and charming ambiance, perfect for starting your day or taking a break from the beach.


Overall, the restaurants and bars of Zipolite provide a delightful array of culinary options, ensuring that every traveler’s cravings are satisfied. So, indulge in the flavors of Mexico and beyond while enjoying the laid-back charm of this beach town.


Nightlife and Entertainment

Despite its laid-back and relaxed atmosphere, Zipolite offers a vibrant and enjoyable nightlife scene that caters to both locals and tourists alike. Whether you’re looking to dance the night away, enjoy live music performances, or simply unwind with a few drinks, Zipolite has options for everyone.


One of the highlights of the nightlife in Zipolite is the beach parties that often take place on weekends and during holidays. These energetic gatherings usually feature live music, DJs, and dancing under the stars. With the sound of crashing waves in the background and the cool ocean breeze, beach parties in Zipolite create an unforgettable atmosphere.


Aside from beach parties, there are also several bars and clubs in the town where you can enjoy a night out. From lively beachfront bars to intimate cocktail lounges, there’s a spot for everyone. These establishments offer a range of drinks, including local favorites like mezcal and refreshing cocktails made with tropical fruits.


In addition to the energetic nightlife, Zipolite also hosts live music performances and cultural events throughout the year. Local musicians and bands often grace the stages of various venues, showcasing their talent and adding to the vibrant atmosphere of the town.


If you’re seeking a more laid-back form of entertainment, there are also options for that. Zipolite is home to several cozy cafes and beachfront hangouts that host acoustic music nights, poetry readings, and cultural gatherings. These intimate settings provide a chance to appreciate local talent and immerse yourself in the artistic and bohemian energy that flows through the town.


For those who enjoy a slower pace in the evenings, Zipolite offers a chance to relax and unwind. The town has numerous beachfront restaurants and bars where you can enjoy a delicious meal, sip on a cocktail, and take in the tranquil ambiance of the ocean waves. This is the perfect opportunity to enjoy a romantic dinner or a quiet night out with friends.


Ultimately, whether you’re in the mood for a lively party, live music, or a laid-back evening by the beach, Zipolite has something to suit your taste. The town’s nightlife and entertainment options ensure that your evenings are just as memorable as your sun-soaked days.


Yoga and Wellness

Zipolite is a haven for those seeking to find inner peace, balance, and rejuvenation. With its serene and natural surroundings, the town offers a variety of yoga and wellness options that allow visitors to connect with their mind, body, and spirit.


Yoga enthusiasts will find a range of yoga studios and retreat centers in Zipolite that offer daily classes for practitioners of all levels. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced yogi, you can join classes that vary from gentle and restorative to dynamic and challenging. Practicing yoga on the beaches of Zipolite provides a unique experience, allowing you to feel grounded and connected to nature.


In addition to regular yoga classes, Zipolite also hosts yoga retreats and workshops throughout the year. These retreats offer a deeper immersion into the practice, providing a nurturing space for self-reflection, growth, and relaxation. Retreats often include not only yoga classes, but also meditation sessions, holistic therapies, and opportunities to explore the natural beauty of the area.


For those seeking a different kind of wellness experience, Zipolite has a range of options to choose from. The town boasts wellness centers and spas that offer a variety of healing and rejuvenating treatments, such as massages, Reiki, and holistic therapies. These centers provide a tranquil and therapeutic environment where you can indulge in self-care and pampering.


Beyond yoga and spa treatments, Zipolite is also known for its commitment to health-conscious cuisine. Many restaurants in the town serve fresh and nourishing dishes made with locally sourced ingredients. Vegetarian and vegan options are plentiful, allowing visitors to fuel their bodies with nutritious meals that support their well-being.


In addition to dedicated wellness spaces, the very essence of Zipolite itself promotes a sense of tranquility and wellness. The pristine beaches, breathtaking sunsets, and sounds of the ocean create a natural backdrop for relaxation and reflection. Visitors can take leisurely walks along the shore, practice meditation by the water’s edge, or simply bask in the healing energies of the surroundings.


Whether you’re looking to deepen your yoga practice, indulge in holistic treatments, or simply reconnect with yourself in a serene environment, Zipolite offers a range of options to nourish your mind, body, and soul.


Local Culture and Festivals

Zipolite’s vibrant local culture and rich traditions add an extra layer of charm to this already captivating beach town. The fusion of indigenous heritage and modern influences creates a unique atmosphere that visitors can immerse themselves in.


The local Zapotec community plays a significant role in shaping the culture of Zipolite. The Zapotec people have a deep connection with the land and the sea, and their customs and traditions are celebrated and preserved throughout the town. Visitors have the opportunity to learn about the Zapotec culture through various cultural events, art displays, and interactions with the local community.


Throughout the year, Zipolite hosts a variety of festivals and celebrations that showcase the local culture and traditions. One of the most notable festivals is the Day of the Dead, or Dia de los Muertos, which is celebrated in late October and early November. During this time, the town comes alive with colorful altars, traditional dances, and vibrant processions to honor and remember loved ones who have passed away.


Another significant festival in Zipolite is the Guelaguetza, which takes place in July. This festival is a celebration of indigenous culture and features traditional music, dancing, and colorful costumes. It serves as a platform to showcase the cultural diversity of the region and brings together people from different communities.


Additionally, Zipolite hosts various art exhibitions, craft fairs, and cultural performances throughout the year. These events provide an opportunity to appreciate the local artistic talent, browse unique handmade crafts, and experience traditional music and dance.


Engaging with the local culture goes beyond attending festivals and events. Visitors can also support the local economy by purchasing handicrafts, art pieces, and locally produced goods from the markets or directly from artisans. This not only supports the local community but also allows visitors to take a piece of Zipolite’s culture home with them.


By embracing and learning about the local culture, visitors can gain a deeper understanding and appreciation for the vibrant tapestry of traditions that make Zipolite a truly unique and captivating destination.


Getting There

Getting to Zipolite is relatively easy, with several transportation options available to suit different preferences and budgets. Here are the common ways to reach this charming beach town:


By Air: The closest major airport to Zipolite is Puerto Escondido International Airport (PXM), located approximately 43 kilometers away. There are regular domestic flights connecting Puerto Escondido to major cities in Mexico, making it convenient for travelers to reach Zipolite. From the airport, you can hire a taxi or take a shared shuttle to Zipolite.


By Bus: Mexico has an extensive bus network, and several bus companies operate routes to Zipolite. From major cities like Oaxaca City or Mexico City, you can take a long-distance bus to the nearby town of Pochutla. From Pochutla, local buses or taxis are available to take you to Zipolite, which is only about 10 minutes away.


By Car: If you prefer the freedom and flexibility of driving, you can rent a car and make your way to Zipolite. The town is easily accessible by road, and there are two main routes to consider: Highway 175 from Oaxaca City or Highway 200 from Puerto Escondido. Both routes offer scenic views of the surrounding mountains and coastline.


It’s important to note that driving in Mexico may be different from what you’re accustomed to, so it’s advisable to familiarize yourself with local traffic rules and regulations. Additionally, parking in Zipolite may be limited or require payment, especially during peak tourist seasons.


Once you’ve arrived in Zipolite, getting around the town is fairly simple. The main beach and the town’s attractions are within walking distance, making it easy to explore on foot. Taxis are also available for longer distances or if you prefer not to walk.


Whether you choose to fly in, take a bus, or drive to Zipolite, the journey to this idyllic beach town is part of the adventure. So pack your bags, make your travel arrangements, and get ready to experience the beauty and relaxation that await in Zipolite.


Safety Tips

While Zipolite is generally a safe destination, it’s always important to prioritize your personal safety and well-being. Here are some key safety tips to keep in mind during your visit to Zipolite:


1. Water Safety: Exercise caution when swimming or participating in water activities. Pay attention to any warning signs, currents, or rip tides. It’s advisable to swim in designated areas and follow the guidance of local lifeguards.


2. Sun Protection: The Mexican sun can be intense, so remember to protect yourself from harmful UV rays. Wear sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses, and lightweight clothing to shield your skin from sunburn. Stay hydrated and seek shade during the hottest hours of the day.


3. Respect the Beach Rules: Zipolite has specific rules for nudity on certain beaches. If you choose to visit the nude section of Playa Zipolite, be mindful of appropriate behavior and respect the comfort zones of others.


4. Secure Your Belongings: Keep your personal belongings secure at all times. Avoid leaving valuables unattended on the beach or in public areas. Consider using a waterproof bag or a locker to protect your belongings when you’re in the water.


5. Travel Insurance: It’s recommended to have travel insurance that covers medical expenses, as well as theft or loss of personal items. Medical care in Mexico can be costly, so having adequate insurance will give you peace of mind during your trip.


6. Street Safety: Zipolite is a relatively safe town, but it’s still advisable to take precautions. Use well-lit and populated areas when walking at night, and avoid displaying expensive jewelry or large amounts of cash. Be aware of your surroundings and trust your instincts.


7. Local Customs and Laws: Familiarize yourself with the local customs and laws of the area. Respect the cultural traditions and be mindful of any regulations regarding public behavior, alcohol consumption, and drug use.


8. Stay Hydrated and Practice Good Hygiene: Mexico’s warm climate can lead to dehydration. Drink plenty of water and stay hydrated throughout your stay. Additionally, practice good hygiene by washing your hands regularly and using hand sanitizer when necessary.


By following these safety tips and exercising common sense, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable experience in Zipolite. Remember that your well-being is paramount, so take precautions and embrace the beauty and tranquility that this Mexican beach town has to offer.



Zipolite, Mexico is an enchanting beach town that offers a unique blend of natural beauty, cultural heritage, and laid-back charm. Its pristine beaches, warm turquoise waters, and breathtaking sunsets make it a paradise for beach lovers and nature enthusiasts. From surfing and water sports to yoga and wellness retreats, there is something for everyone in Zipolite.


The town’s acceptance of nudity on designated beaches adds to its bohemian atmosphere and creates a liberating and inclusive environment for those seeking a clothing-optional experience. Zipolite’s local culture and festivals provide a glimpse into the vibrant traditions of the Zapotec community and offer opportunities for cultural immersion and exploration.


The accommodation options in Zipolite cater to various budgets and preferences. Whether you’re looking for a luxurious beachfront resort, a cozy boutique hotel, or a budget-friendly hostel, there is a place to suit your needs.


The culinary scene in Zipolite is diverse, offering a range of cuisines from fresh seafood to traditional Mexican dishes and international favorites. The town’s restaurants and bars provide opportunities to indulge in delicious meals, refreshing drinks, and enjoy the vibrant nightlife.


When it comes to getting to Zipolite, there are multiple transportation options, including air travel to Puerto Escondido International Airport, bus rides to the nearby town of Pochutla, or driving on the scenic highways.


Safety is a top priority in Zipolite, and visitors are encouraged to practice common sense and follow basic safety precautions. By respecting the local customs, securing belongings, and staying aware of your surroundings, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.


In conclusion, Zipolite offers a truly unforgettable getaway where you can unwind, connect with nature, and immerse yourself in Mexican hospitality and culture. Whether you seek relaxation on the beach, thrilling water sports, or a journey of self-discovery through yoga and wellness, Zipolite has something to offer every traveler. So pack your beach essentials, embrace the laid-back vibe, and experience the magic of Zipolite, Mexico.